Squad news

AYTHAMI COULD END PLAYING AT MIDFIELD

29 Apr 2011
The casualties at midfield for the coming game against Atletico Madrid are forcing Lotina to search for new alternatives, and one of the tested choices is to perform with Aythami on the pivote positions.

The match against Atletico Madrid is a crucial final for the permanence, but it’s also marked by the casualties at the first team of Deportivo, especially at midfield. And it’s that Rubén Pérez is out due to contract reasons, while Antonio Tomás is injured. And with Juca training apart due to a new muscular problem, the only two alternatives left for the pivote positions are Juan Rodriguez and Juan Dominguez.

On Tuesday coach Miguel Ángel Lotina said that the normal thing would be to perform with both men at the centre of the pitch, but also admitted the possibility of using a central defender, more in concrete he gave the names of Aythami Artiles and Ze Castro.

And on Wednesday the coach tested both alternatives, because during the training session he tested a formation with Juan Rodriguez and Juan Dominguez on the pivote positions, and later replaced the Galician youngster with Aythami. It was also reported that the coach had a conversation with the Canarian, apparently he was giving special instructions on how to cover the position.

On Thursday Aythami talked to reporters and said that the position of pivote isn’t a novelty for him, ”I guess the coach is thinking in what he will do, and we all are living a situation in which we can help. If I have to perform as a midfielder then it won’t be a new thing for me. At Las Palmas I played eight or nine games on that position and everything was fine. The truth is that I have played there since my second year at the Juveniles team. I was always more as a midfielder than a central defender, and sometimes I even performed as a playmaker, though it’s now clear that my position is at the back zone.”

But Juan Dominguez also received special instructions coming from the coach, as the Galician youngster told to reporters, "The coach explained some general things. We must exploit the moment when the winger is attacking, at that moment we must release passes between the lines... This is a team of aids, we must be all together. This is the path to follow."

During Wednesday’s training session Lotina tested two alternatives. The first was the couple Juan Rodriguez-Juan Dominguez at midfield, with Guardado on the right wing and Lassad on the left. The second was the combination Juan Rodriguez-Aythami at midfield, with Juan Dominguez on the right wing and Guardado on his normal position, the left.

The doubts of Lotina with these two combinations come from the fact that Juan Rodriguez and Juan Dominguez have barely played together on this season as the couple at midfield, actually the only game in which these two men performed together as the two pivotes in the lineup was during the home match against Malaga (Nov 21). In that opportunity Ruben Pérez and Juan Rodriguez were the two midfielders at the starting eleven, and Juan Dominguez entered for the final eleven minutes replacing Rubén.

Neither Aythami has experience playing as a defensive midfielder, at least at Deportivo. Actually, the last time in which the Canarian disputed an official game with Depor was on March 12 at RCD Espanyol, it was the last match in which Lotina used the system with five defenders, since then the Basque coach decided to return to the figure with four defenders, leaving Aythami on the bench.

ARCHIVE NEWS APR/11

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